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Korepina A.V. Legal mechanisms of mitigation of administrative responsibility for anticompetitive agreements

Published in journal "Administrative and municipal law", 2016-12 in rubric "Liability in administrative and municipal law", pages 987-994.

Resume: The general tendency of the punitive policy formation in administrative responsibility legislation has influenced all the spheres of public management. The most serious administrative sanctions are established in the antimonopoly sphere, particularly for anticompetitive agreements. The Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation doesn’t differentiate them according to business entities, and it has a negative impact on the development of small and medium entrepreneurship in the Russian Federation. The author analyzes the introduced general and specific legal mechanisms of humanization of administrative responsibility and the problems of their practical realization. The research subject includes administrative norms regulating social relations in the sphere of imposition and implementation of administrative responsibility for anticompetitive agreements and realization of legal mechanisms of mitigation of legal responsibility and release from responsibility. The research object includes the article 14.32 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation and the articles, establishing general and special legal instruments of mitigation of responsibility and release from responsibility for anticompetitive agreements, the judicial practice in the sphere of application of the Code’s provisions, related to the imposition and mitigation of administrative responsibility for anticompetitive agreements. The article is based on general scientific (analysis, synthesis, the system-structural, formal-logical and other methods) and special scientific methods of cognition (logical and legal, comparative-legal the method of legal hermeneutics (interpretation) and descriptive method). The author comes to the following conclusions: -         The influence of the general tendency of administrative-punitive state policy is observed in the sphere of imposition of administrative responsibility for anticompetitive agreements; -         The administrative sanctions for anticompetitive agreements, provided by the article 14.32. of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation, are very serious; the Administrative Offences Code doesn’t differentiate them according to business entities and it has a negative impact on the development of small and medium entrepreneurship in the Russian Federation; -         The legislation provides for general and specific mechanisms, aimed at the mitigation of administrative responsibility and release from it for anticompetitive agreements, but the practical implementation of some of them is quite problematic; -         The introduction of more flexible criteria, helping take into account the property and financial status of various business entities, brought to administrative responsibility, seems to be reasonable; -         In order to improve the legislation in this sphere and provide the uniformity of application of juridical terminology, the author proposes to insert the term “cartel” not only in the comment, but also in the disposition of the article 14.32. of the Administrative Offences Code; to differentiate the volume of sanctions depending on the category of business entities. 

Keywords: differentiation of sanctions, legal mechanisms, administrative offence, humanization, administrative responsibility, anticompetitive agreement, cartel, judicial practice, competition, economic security

DOI: 10.7256/1999-2807.2016.12.20066

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